Money Papers - Gold Printed
Woodblock printed gold money papers are for good luck, long life, and happiness. Sometimes this is conveyed through characters and symbols and others show Fu, Lu and Shou,the Gods for luck, prosperity and longevity. The papers also convey joy and nobility. Peaches signifying long life often emerge from the border. The bat is a homonym for fu,luck, so it also means luck and good fortune. Money coins often hang from the bat's wings as a wish for wealth. The deer, a homonym for wealth or prosperity holds a peach branch in its mouth. These common motifs appear on papers from all over China and Southeast Asia. The larger the paper the more valuable it is to the deities.
The pattern with Fu, Lu and Shou is one of my favorites of all the money papers. I categorize these as Triad papers. When I first saw them they looked to me worthy of the most important deities, which in fact is their function. I found big ones, approximately 10"x10", many months before I finally spotted a stack of bundles of little ones. It always thrills me to discover another variety of spirit papers. I pulled these little triad papers from a cranny in my favorite ritual store. They smelled musty and rich like the raw plant fibers from which they are pressed. A coarse plant fiber string tied the bundles together, so nothing about them was artificial. Most of the time when I buy spirit paper bundles, they come in a plastic bag, or tied with a plastic ribbon; some shopkeepers even staple them together.
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